Who could replace Sargeant if Williams opt for change?

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Williams holds the final call for the grid next season with only
Logan Sargeant's seat left to be officially secured. The American
rookie has come under pressure given his incident record across the
campaign thus far, with his crashes largely overshadowing what has
been an impressive improvement with regards to pace compared with
teammate Alex Albon. Whilst scrutiny is increasing with no further
space up for grabs, a number of names have been linked with the
seat alongside Albon and RacingNews365 .com has taken a look at
each of them, as well as Sargeant himself. Liam Lawson The New
Zealander has pulled up trees since beginning his substitute roll
for the injured Daniel Ricciardo at AlphaTauri at the Dutch Grand
Prix. Lawson was tipped by many to continue with the Faenza-based
outfit into next term given his impressive performances – including
a points finish at the Singapore Grand Prix. But Red Bull instead
decided to wait one more year before handing Lawson what will
almost certainly be a full-time role in 2025, with Yuki Tsunoda and
Ricciardo elected for a drive next term. Whilst his talent would no
doubt be a huge plus for Williams, the fact he would likely only be
released for one year by Red Bull would not sit well with a team
focused on building for the future. No matter how popular this move
would be, it won't happen. Mick Schumacher Another move that would
be popular amongst the F1 fanbase, Mick Schumacher has been a name
floated for a switch from his Mercedes reserve role. The German is
off the grid having been released by Haas at the end of last season
and has found his feet assisting the Silver Arrows'
and George Russell. But whilst Mercedes' ties with Williams – not
least with former Strategy Director James Vowles as Team Principal
– the move would make some sense. However, Schumacher looks all but
certain to be making a switch to endurance racing with Alpine's
World Endurance Championship Hypercar programme, leaving a switch
to Williams highly unlikely. Théo Pourchaire Sauber Academy driver
Théo Pourchaire has impressed throughout his time in F2 having
joined at the age of 17. Now 20, the Frenchman looks set to secure
the F2 championship with ART yet his obvious avenue onto the F1
grid has been blocked by the retention of Zhou Guanyu and Valtteri
Bottas at Hinwil-based Alfa Romeo. Whether Williams would see
Pourchaire as an upgrade on a seasoned Sargeant is hard to believe,
so this move is unlikely to happen. Frederik Vesti Pourchaire's F2
teammate Frederik Vesti has the same issue – what does he bring
that Sargeant can't? Vesti also doesn't have the title upcoming as
Pourchaire likely does, so why has he been linked? There is no
doubt he has a bright future with a mix of strong pace and exciting
racecraft, but the clincher here is his Mercedes ties, following
the same path as George Russell had done before him. But this is
unlikely to be an avenue Vowles would wish to pursue for next
season. Felipe Drugovich Felipe Drugovich has been searching for an
F1 drive ever since his F2 title win last season. The Brazilian
took up a role as part of Aston Martin's development programme and
has served as a reserve driver for the Silverstone-based outfit
this year. Rumours spread that a potential IndyCar tilt had been
turned down so that Drugovich could find a seat on the F1 grid and
with no other avenue clearly lined up, he sits as the most likely
candidate to replace Sargeant, should Williams flip the switch.
Logan Sargeant Crashes aside, Sargeant has had a solid rookie year.
The progression arc when judging pace and performance has been
pleasing – he was matching Albon throughout the Japanese Grand Prix
weekend before his qualifying crash, all with dated aerodynamic
components given the budget cap squeeze. There is no doubt
improvements have to be made – the incidents seriously dent
development opportunities for the entire team – but the foundations
of a strong F1 driver are there. Sargeant's status as F1's only
American is a huge draw commercially for the team, giving him extra
scope to stay and continue developing. A lot of the pressure is
being applied because the rest of silly season is over. The
sensible move would be to retain and, judging by recent comments
from the Williams hierarchy, that is exactly what will happen.

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